The Queensland women’s Indigenous team has missed out on a maiden National Indigenous Cricket Championships title by a heartbreaking five runs. The state’s first standalone women’s team was unable to chase down New South Wales’ 134-run total in the decider in Alice Springs. The Blues batted first, opener Sara Darney setting the pace with a top score of 59, including three sixes and seven fours. Tamika Hansen (2-22) silenced Darney just before NSW’s total ticked over to triple figures, Christina Coulson (2-15) chipping in to contain them to 5-134. Carly Fuller (37) and Shareene Ferrier (25 no) championed Queensland’s chase, with skipper Courtney Hagen (21) and Hansen (21) ensuring the match came down to the nail-biting final over. Queensland need 12 runs to win with just one wicket in hand but fell agonisingly short on 9-129. This was the first time an all-Queensland women’s side has competed at the NICCs, with last year’s team consisting of Queensland and Tasmanian competing under the Queensland banner. Queensland Cricket’s John Stock, the General Manager - Game & Market Development, congratulated the team on their achievements. “NSW have won eight titles in a row but this was probably the closest they have been pushed in a final and the Queensland squad and coaching staff, led by Ash Renouf who was in his first year as coach after a great playing career with the men's team, deserve to be acknowledged for the bold way in which they approached this tournament,’’ he said. “It’s also worth noting that we had four 14-year-olds in our squad who have had little access to structured club cricket so far, but have been exposed through the MILO T20 Blast Schools Cup and that promises to be a valuable area of talent identification for us going forward.” “Queensland Cricket’s Game & Market Development staff are seeing some great results around the State from the growth in women’s and girls’ cricket. There’s been a huge increase of teams in dedicated female competitions across the State – over 500% increase in 12 months – and this sort of exposure will continue to help us grow cricket as a sport of choice for women and girls,’’ he said.